Being a college student is a lot of fun. You get to make new friends, enjoy a more relaxed timetable, and eat chips for breakfast without a parent nagging about nutrition; but of course, somewhere amongst all that leisure and pleasure you have to find time to write college papers too.
It doesn’t really matter whether English is your first, second or even fourth language, or how much you know about the paper’s topic, producing a strong piece of work can be challenging. If you want to boost your grades these three easy ways to boost the impact of your written English could help.
#1 Always Have a Clear Structure
Ever met someone who goes off on so many tangents while sharing a story that you have lost all interest, (and the will to live) by the time they shut up? Been gripped by a movie only for it to end suddenly, leaving you feeling unsatisfied? Or felt frustrated by a friend who has strong opinions on a topic but can offer absolutely no reason why? Similar issues plague many college papers, which is what makes a good, solid framework so important.
You may be familiar with the ‘Introduction, argument, evidence, conclusion’ approach, but look critically at your work. Does it catch your reader’s attention, provide data or information to support your point, and avoid cheating them of closure? If not, keep this in mind when planning, writing and editing.
#2 Cut the Waffle
“The tall woman, who liked ice cream, had walked three blocks in heels and looked exhausted. She was tired. The three blocks she walked consisted entirely of drab offices; there was nothing interesting to see. ‘Next time I walk three blocks carrying bags I will probably cry’, she wailed.”
How gripping was that short extract? Few people would feel inspired by something with so much repetition and pointless detail. Stuffing papers with any old words to reach the required word count is tempting when both time and ideas are in short supply, but it is not helpful in the long term. Avoid falling victim to this strategy by making sure every word and sentence adds power to your paper, and the points you are trying to make.
#3 Expand Your Vocabulary
If you ask a teacher ‘what is a sentence?’ the basic answer would be: ‘a series of words which when presented together have a clear meaning’. They may go on to talk about verbs, subjects, objects and more, and of course good sentence structure and grammar are vital for strong writing, but having a wide and rich vocabulary to draw on is a great way to make the most of your work.
The best way to boost your vocabulary bank is to learn new words in context. This helps cement the meaning, and define appropriate usage, of each new term you acquire.
Now you are all set to tackle your college papers with new insight and ideas which are easy to implement, and reap the rewards in grade points.